Sunday, December 25, 2011

How did The Plan go this week?

Hey, Hey! Merry christmas!
We all enjoy the quiet life around here on the biggest Holiday of them all (not so much here!) so just a quick update to review the week. No heinous pics today, sorry...

Overall this week was VERY good. I fear that means I'm in for a doozy next week in which everything sucks. Not so this week though- with the exception of the treadmill runs which I'm still having a hard time getting into, things were good.

Sunday- 3 miles, treadmill not terribly fast or fun...

Monday- 11 miles outside, at some really decent pace like 8:37 or 8:43 or some such not so shitty number. Rolling hills, upper 20's for temps (perfect.)

Tuesday- Rest

Wednesday- Legs felt like ass. Put them on the treadmill for 3.2 miles- that felt like 300- and they were better after that. This was the only icky run of the week.

Thursday- 6 miles, tempo. I still felt like the legs were a touch rough from earlier in the week so I figured that an 8:30 pace was optimistic... I missed it for the first mile coming in at 8:59 but really kicked it up after that and finished with an average pace of 8:03. This was a different and more challenging route than my last tempo run with an uphill finish (about 3/4 mile of uphill climbing- ugh...) I was very pleased with this.

Friday- 3 stupid treadmill miles

Saturday- 6.2, outside planning to take it as easy as I felt like. No pressure. finished with an average pace of 8:18 which I was pretty surprised about. This was kind of an "extra" run as it wasn't on the list of things to do... but it was fun!

Total: 32.4 miles? Really? Wow! for me that's a helluva week!
And short lives- this week is scheduled to be under 20 miles for the first time in a while...

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Holiday Fashion Fabulocity!

Merry Christmas Eve friends! To welcome in this festive magical time of madness I will sing more of my chosen Christmas Carol of 2011 to ya. Better known to you as the deeply sarcastic (from my perspective) "Sexy and I know it..."
The theme of today is soooo obvious.

"I've got PASSION in my pants and I ain't afraid to show it. show it. show it. "

Actually this is a bag of frozen veg post 6 mile tempo run, the hip is sore.

But really people, passion? Frozen peas and corn? No difference....

And the socks of today. "HO HO HO LIKE YOUR MOTHER" said I, wisely.

If you know of anyone more awesome that I, please feel free to point me in their direction to say hello. Once again, I feel that there is no real question of my fabulocity- especially in the fashion department! I'm sexy and I KNOW IT... YEAH.

Friday, December 23, 2011

What I see on a long run.

Ran my way thru 11 miles this past Monday- cold, but beautiful weather. Had planned to run 10 but ended up needing to do 11. I'm definately not the cute type of person who is all "I just ran 30 miles by accident!" The bottom line was that I still had a mile to run in order to get to where I had started (bad mapping on my part) so I ran. Managed to average an 8:37 pace which is rather remarkable, and I didn't feel like I was pushing the pace. I was, however, a tad sore the next afternoon....
Anyway, on to what I saw!

What is this doing in a random field?

Hmmm. Muddy trail...

Ahhh, it's a ski trail How's THAT working out for ya?

Our local ski bump.

And Mt. Washington. IT has snow but WE do NOT!!

Thursday, December 22, 2011


There is this hill in my town which is such a monster that it is even a pain in the butt to drive up. I can barely manage more than a shuffle when I run up it (I avoid it. It is avoidable and really, is just ridiculous.)

I have been curious about what kind of incline this hill provides as it seems FAR and beyond the acceptable norm. I finally have an answer.


Put THAT in your pipe and smoke it!

Friday, December 16, 2011

THE PLAN... OH- Twelve Style.

Remember THE PLAN from last year? the pesky little sub-two Runner's World PLAN that became, for a time, a second husband to me? A judgemental second husband, with a secret agenda- one that involved causing me pain, mental strife and taper tantrums of the highest quality. A PLAN which I tried to follow to a tee- but did not complete a whole cycle of for either Half that I ran due to some injuries sustained from snow shoveling and perhaps slight overtraining.

One thing I have learned in the past year. Make that two, actually.
ONE!!! You don't have to be married to your plan in order to complete a Half. Flexibility is key. I was SO burned out in April that I was doubtful that I would ever be interested in running serious mileage again (and look at where I am now- blissfully forgetful of those troubled times... must be like childbirth? who knows.)
TWO! You're gonna hurt. You'll get so used to walking with a hitch, and to be unable to decend stairs in a ladylife fashion that it will become second nature.

Looking towards my Half on January 14th and my SIXTEEN MILER the following week I constructed a PLAN for my own self. I based this plan on the wish to develop strength, mental fortitude, avoid burnout and the hope to be able to complete the whole cycle. Here's to hoping! Also, I was able to construct this plan with an eye on my busy schedule, the Holidays, and there is room for flexibility for things like weather as I hope to get the majority of my long runs done outside. (again: here's to hoping!)

Monday- 8 miles, 6 outside 2 on Treadmill (got DARK!)
Tuesday- off
Wednesday- 4 Miles, Treadmill (still getting used to treadmill- I SUCK running on it after taking 10 months off from it. I am a MUCH better road runner!)
Thursday- 3 Miles Dreadmilllll.
Friday- 6.2 Miles Tempo- was shooting for an 8:30 pace and snagged an 8:10- I was VERY impressed with myself especially as the route had some good looking hills!
TOTAL: 24.2 miles

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Last Race of 2011!

Wrapping up the year (and 11 in '11- DONE!) at the Brewers Dash in Portland on Sunday.
It was a beautiful freaking day, and the nice sunshine made up for the fact that it was about twenty below... Or 32 above but really, no difference there...

I got to run this little dash with (one of) The Huz's best friends. This was his FIRST 5K and he was nervous enough to seriously consider hitting the vommmmm button. But he did not..

There is no denying that I am scarier than he is. As it turns out I am scarier than almost anyone! It would have been nice to get some pics of the waterfront- which was super pretty- but it was too damn cold and we kinda waited until the last minute to head outside. Our epic coaching squad of The Huz's BFF's Wife and Mom were ready to dash back to the bar before we even lined up to start.. Wimps!

I was rocking some mad sexy socks for this race. Oh Snap is right, suckahs... Actually I'd say my whole outfit scored pretty high on the anti-rape meter. Too bad that the BFF didn't take a page from my bright color book- at the turnaround I lost him- perhaps it was the complete clusterfudge of people but suddenly he was nowhere to be found... We stuck together pretty well, elbow to elbow crowds and all for the first mile (in 9:00) and thru the next .5. I thought he had managed to get in front of me so I sprinted ahead to catch up and found that it was another dude in non-descript clothing. There was no finding him then... So off I went!

Here we are after our big finish! BFF managed a LEGIT PR in 27:55 (awesome!) and I snuck in at 24:47- dudes- I ran the last mile in 7:07. WHAT??!!! Shitttttt.... That's what I'm sayin..

We drank a beer and it was really good. Then we went out and ate sausages and THEY were really good. We wrapped things up by snagging a gellato- it is NEVER too cold for ice cream products!

Then we all went home. THE END!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

2012 Legendary Race Schedule

2012 is lurking right around the corner. Since winter is the time that (if I so choose) I actually have time to run and/or train to race better than badly I have formulated a plan. Of sorts. Subject to change.

Here is a casual list of what I have lined up for the near future. Races in "bold" are races that I have either signed up for or will be shortly.
And FYI- my thought process when a little something like this (prepare to be scared or confused.)
"I want to do 12 races in '12 as that is very catchy. I'd like to run 4 half marathons, and for at least one of them to be a new one. I'd like to try something that I never have done before. I'd like a challenge that pushes me out of my comfort zone but do not wish to marathon because I might die. I must keep in mind that by June 1st my real training season will be OVER so anything during the summer will be casual- per the summer norm. I must also keep in mind that last year I did not race in May, June, and September so if I plan to uphold the same schedule I need to race extra in the cold months to make it to the BIG 12 Also... I need to remember that as of right now my Fall schedule is VERY much up in the air and I can't count on getting much done then. We'll see!!!"

December 11- 5K with a friend to wrap up the year. Clearly, this does not count for the Oh-Twelve season.

ONWARD TO 2012!!!

January 14th- Half Marathon Palooza of pure magic in the bizzaro land of an INDOOR Track in NH. No lie here, I am going to run 66 times aroundandaroundandaroundandaround this track with a bunch of my new best friends. This definitely qualifies as both something I have not done before and something that I am not 100% comfortable with. Looking forward to it though as I think it will be a hoot. No bit time goal for this one as (as it turns out) it will be my last long run before....

January 22- 16 miler, "Boston Prep" race in Derry NH. Looks like a real beast of a course, in the DEAD of winter, at an ODD number of miles. 16 miles ABSO-FRICKIN-LUTELY pushes me out of my comfort zone but i think I can handle it. Goal for this race: Be able to GET there- meaning NO bad weather. AND to FINISH...

Feb 19th- Half At The Hamptons, Hampton NH. Did this race last year and despite the fact that it was 17 degrees with a 20 MPH wind I loved it. Great race, beautiful course, fun times. I hope to have no issue getting under the finish in less than 2 hours here...

March 18th- (I need help deciding!!)
Half Of Quincy (Quincy Mass)
New Bedford Half (New Bedford Mass)
Any thoughts?

April 7th- Race The Runways Half, Brunswick ME. Run 13.1 miles around a big old airport? YES... I see no reason that I should not be able to sneak in under 2 hours here as well. This is ANOTHER new race to me which I am very excited about!

Here marks the end of my super fun, ultra challenging, and VERY COLD winter race schedule. For may and June I currently have NOTHING in the book as there is little to choose from at this point (and my Equine Competitive season is in full swing thru those months.)

July (all tentative, but I almost always run these...)
4th- 4 on the 4th, Bridgton ME: Two choices here, PR like a boss or run with the kids and PW like a fool.

11th- Harrison 5K- usually 100 degrees but is 7 minutes away from my house and is right next to a bar. Yessssss.

21st- Lovell Old Home Days 5K- Always has the worlds WORST race tee but they have really good donuts post race..

August- Beach 2 Beacon (if I get in.)

October- Maine Half Marathon- Kickass..... Loved this race despite the shittastic weather.

Mid October my town always has a cute 5K that I enjoy.

Apparently in November there is going to be a Half literally NEXT DOOR (well, next town over) to where I live. Barring unforseen events I fully plan to do this.

Also in November I can scoot over to Lovell for a Gasping gobbler.
I hope to run the Portland 4 miler on Thanksgiving as it is not my year to cook!

Anywhoo. That should get me my 12 in 12 although as I mentioned the Fall schedule is out of my control at this point with MANY variables.
Feel free to leave some feedback, suggestions and let me know if any of y'all will be racing theses races. We can meet up for a donut....

Monday, December 5, 2011

In which we learn that I now suck less than 5 weeks ago.

Check back tomorrow for the "What I am excited about" news. I'm really stringing this along, aren't I. (actually, I feel that I need photographic extras for this story and not only is my camera dead but I ran out of batteries.. )

Let's talk about how I suck less than I did back in October. I seems doubtful that I am going to make the 2012 Olympic team for either the Marathon OR the 100 Meter dash, much to my shock, but things are improving regardless.
Which brings up (again) the title of that book I'm going to write:
"How to improve at anything: Work at it you idiot!"

I do appriciate the kick in the britches that scampering around with my brutally honest GPS/Nike iphone app gave me. No longer could I lie to myself and believe that my 9:48 mile was closer to 6:34 (ha. HA. ha.) No longer could I trick my simple little mind into thinking that a 3.7 mile run was 4.0 miles. Alas, the days of being half assed were behind me and it was time to face the music.

Clearly, I do not head out into the mountains of my little town daily to beat the clock. There are days when I run fast (er than some) and days when I just don't (most days, as a rule.) Regardless of my lazy desires the numbers don't lie. I have not had ANY miles that start with the number "9" for a few weeks now. My average 5 mile run is done between an 8:03 pace and an 8:35 pace. (over hills and all kinds of absurd terrain.) This is good. I banged out a 7:30 mile the other day without even trying. don't ask me HOW that happened other than I was rather focused on getting the hell home, taking off my shoes and drinking a beer. (this is motivation at its finest!)

Anyway. Fleet footed gazelle like being I am not. More fit and happy to be held accountable middle aged woman I am!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

In which I make yet another return from no-blog-land...

Yeah, yeah. I know. Weeks have gone by.


Now I have things to talk about that are more exciting than "what I had for dinner last night" "How Thanksgiving was just like every other thanksgiving that there has ever been" Or (my fav) "MY FEELINGS" (like that would happen.)

I took a couple days after the last race- ever since falling down the hill and breaking my foot into a million pieces in early October I have been bothered by extreme tension in my achilles. To combat that potential land mine I took a couple days which turned into a half dozen due to the pesky foot of snow that dropped on us. (oh good! an original post about "Listning to my BODY!!")


But really! I have fun things coming up. For example:
-Why am I so EXCITED?? Why? WHY!!!
-Do I still suck at running as badly as I did 8 weeks ago? (maybe!!)
-What's next? Since you are all so curious about the mediocre efforts of this old hag I expect that you'll all be on the EDGES of your seats for this one.

And, of course, my typical musings about all things neon sock related, pot roast for breakfast related, and perhaps I'll sing a song or two just to make your stay more exciting!

......signing off now, a real cliffhanger, come back tomorrow for details yo.....

Monday, November 21, 2011

Weekend Wrap Up Extrordinaire!

A good weekend was had by all, with (perhaps) the exception of my stomach who was VERY sad after being overloaded with yummy birthday goodies. URGH. (it seemed worth it at the time to eat oysters, sweetbreads, a slab of pan seared flounder, a lemon buttermilk tartlet, a slab of cheese, (and later...) pumpkin whoopie pies, fondue, mushroom risotto ball things, Martha Stewart style beef stroganoff, and so on and so forth.) What can you do??

Needless to say when I woke up pre-race on Saturday I was a little icky. (and I had not even consumed half of said items yet.) Again, WHAT can you do?! I took a few pepto, ate some boring toast, force fed myself a yogurt and was on the fast track to a full recovery.

It was a perfect day for a race! Sunny, low 40's and windy (it is always windy.) I had very different expectations than the last time I 5K'd for a few reasons. Let's review, shall we? (and here shall end my Epic Blogging Week-ish. NO idea how ANY of you manage to pull off a whole month of this!)

-I 5K best if I take it VERY easy leading up to the race. Like, a 6 mile week. THAT didn't happen as the weather was too good to pass up on making quality mileage. STRIKE ONE!

-The race was all on dirt and grass, a medium that I don't run on much. STRIKE TWO!

-Speed work. NOT! STRIKE THREE!

Regardless I had come to the conclusion that I should enjoy myself, run as well as I could on that day (what a novel concept) and know that a PR was not a reasnable goal.

I only have positive things to say about how the race went and considering my typical struggle with the 5K distance (I hate sprinting) and my tendency to run the last mile in like 47 minutes, AND the feeling I usually get that I wish to DIE this is very good indeed. I ran with brutal and honest consistency. (thnks gps) However, the race was NOT brutal and I never wished to lie down and wait for the paramedics even though I was running much faster than I have been able to manage in practice. Even though it was a very small race I passed 10 or so people in the last mile (which accounts for more than 10% of the runners!) The course was a teensy bit long according to the ever honest GPS but that's cool- better long that short so it "counts"!

The one tricky thing about this race was the FOUR hairpin turn-arounds. I found that no matter how I prepared for the little buggers there was NO way to keep a good pace around them. Given the fact that I had the chance to do them FOUR times I tried a variety of things, none of which worked. SLOW. SLOW!

And YES, I (along with everyone) was soundly beated by the State Champ, a skinny, leggy little kid who has legit skills. He runs in the manner of a gazelle, barely skimming the ground as he runs 5 minute miles with barely a modicum of effort. Little asshole....!

In conclusion, to finish in 24:08 was just fine, I won my age division (proving it was, indeed, a very small race) and was thr 4th or 5th place woman. I had to skedaddle before the official results were in but I'm pretty close on the final results!

So, from here I have another 5K in mid-December that I am running with a friend then it will be winter, 2012 and we'll see where the road takes me!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

5K today!

I zipped around a 5K today- and by "zipped" I mean I drove in, jumped out of the car and ran the race, ran BACK to the car and went back to work (people were still running, lots of people...)

I am VERY happy with how today went, and most of you will be shocked by that since my recorded finish time was 24:08. (3.14 miles, 24:08 giving me an average pace of 7:43 I think.) (GPS said at 5K I was at 23:57- silly extra 15 steps...)

EVERY mile was completed with the first number being "7" which is incredible considering what I have been managing lately...

MORE tomorrow- including the gory details of off road running,hairpin turns, being lapped by the state champion who runs like a little 17 year old Ryan Hall and my results. Stay tuned!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Today is the day... when I become a WOMAN!


(I shout that thing about becoming a woman every year on my birthday and I AM STILL WAITING!)

I LOVE my birthday. I do not have any issues with aging and I usually enjoy spending the day working per the norm and eating good food (thanks Mom!) I had butterscotch bread pudding for breakfast- need I say more? Then I had a little 5 mile run- the bread pudding did me well and stayed put where it belonged!

It was a solid day. My clients brought me candy and scrub brushes for horse buckets (this was a funny gift!) The Huz is going to take me to dinner tomorrow at the very best-EST place ever.

I am intending to finish up my day, go home and drink a couple of beers to celebrate the fact that I have been able to do so legally for 11 years now. Hooooray to being 32!!

PS: I will continue the streak of blogging thru the Birthday weekend- yes, WEEKEND, I am a CELEB! Longest blogging streak EVER.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Running Haters

Do any of you notice that Running Haters are usually NOT EVEN RUNNERS??!

True, I have a love/hate relationship with running but in the end I LOVE it and try to do it as often as possible, even if I am not the worlds best or fastest.

I was talking to my coach today, an elite rider who is quite a bit better than I.

Coach: I don't know how you do it, you are going to ruin your knees for sure.

Me: You know what I normally say to that? "I might end up with bad knees but you are out of SHAPE!" HAHA! (but she is not, and she knew this was tounge in cheek)

Coach: (sadly) I can't even run two feet....

Me:(helpfully, and stating the obvious) You might be going to fast?

Coach: Maybe, but I really can't do it. I have asthma.

Me: Well. Lots of people with asthma run, and I know some personally so know it can be done, can be done well and you are only a mild case. You could start off really slow, take lots of walk breaks, easy stuff!

Coach: Really, when I try to run to airport terminals I get all out of breath, I just can't run.

Me: (getting sick of conversation) When you run in the airport you are most likely hampered by luggage, running faster than you can manage and under pressure. And honestly, do you even want to run??

Coach: No because I can't. And it would probably ruin my knees.


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Running Geek...

Oh My. I am Forrest Gump.

Sorry about the blurry, my Mom took this pic and I imagine that she was quaking from horror (who wouldn't??)

Owww yeah, awwww yeah. I'm sorry but this is Legen... WAIT FOR IT!!!!... DARY!

What am I doing here? Go ahead and guess.

Just barely snuck in today's episode. BUSY!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Marathon Musings for Monday

I would imaging that the thought of successfully completing a marathon is something that has danced thru the mind of almost every semi serious runner out there.
This is getting to be something that is on my mind lately, and that I have rather mixed feelings about. It is true that 10 months ago I had never run farther than 4 miles and that a 10K was still a questionable goal. Since then I have proven to myself that I can complete the Half Marathon distance in some degree of health and physical soundness. **ahem** Truth be told, I have proven to myself that I can, in fact, RUN the full 13.1 miles on no legitimate training what-so-ever and emerge unscathed. (slow, but unscathed none the less.)

Could I have continued another 13.1? HELLS to the NO. No, NO, NO.

Do I think that I would have to become 100% more committed to my training plan than I was last winter when I managed my best Half time? YES, YES, YES!

AND... Do I honestly think that I can fit that into my schedule? (I work 50-70 hour weeks. No lie) Well, no I do not. I simply can NOT imagine finding the time to fit 40+ miles into my week- I don't know how you working gals do it. Please send me some of the kool-aid that you are drinking at your earliest possible convenience!

Here is how I see it. I could probably kinda train and finish, kinda slow. Or very slow. Is that what I want? I am not sure that I can say at this time. I have been finding myself thinking seriously of trying the full distance, if for no other reason that to say I did it. BUT! (and this is a but but for me...) I honestly have a hard time doing things half way, and imagining myself finishing 26.2 miles in 6+ hours reminds me of riding a Grand Prix test (just to check it off your bucket list) and getting a 55%. Not so hot.

A good comparison, there. Grand Prix is the highest level in Dressage and it takes a hell ton of training and years to get there. (and most horses will never make it to that point, period, good rider up on them or not.) Case in point, I am lucky to have trained over the past 13 (count 'em) years a horse of my own, from being a badass baby to FEI dressage. He is thisclose to being able to complete the Grand Prix test but in all probability we would not score as well as I would like to. This is because he is not an athletic dynamo, but is a very good boy who I love and respect for being the interesting critter that he is. He might NEVER be the kind of Grand Prix horse who can throw down huge scores, and that is just fine. A good friend of mine has said to me "Hey, you are THISCLOSE. Just DO it because life with horses is SO uncertain that he could come up lame tomorrow and it could be YEARS until you are THISCLOSE again!!" And I say "True. BUT to get a score that will reflect well upon me professionally I will have to push this horse past his physical limits, making him sore, maybe lame and definitely not happy. He is VERY good at what he does now so here we shall stay for the time being." The string that ties marathon running to FEI dressage is that in order to be really good at it you (or your horse) need to be a crazy freak of an athlete, able to leap tall buildings in a single bound and prone to eating small children for breakfast. Or similar...

In my running there is no partner involved and the only one I can inflict severe mental and physical strife upon is my own silly self. And hey, that means that if I wish to run 342.98 marathon miles then a: I can only hurt myself and b:there certainly isn't any shame to be found in finishing slow.

This has been on my mind as of late mostly because if I choose to go for it it will HAVE to be in the Spring. As we have all discovered over the years I have no time to train for a 1K from May to September so anything longer than the length of my driveway is OUT.

I'd love to hear some opinions, training suggestions, scoldings, recipes for whatever all you super-women out there eat to make you so damn fast, and maybe a non-paid assistant to free up some of my time. Thanks and Thanks!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The name of my blog, de-mystified.

I do appriciate the fact that the population of the internet does not think that almost 32 is "middle" aged.

I must say, that I do not either.

Back before this blog I had one called "middle aged waitress" telling the sordid tale of a horrible job that I was unfortunate to have. In the waitressing industry (although not at this particular hell hole) I felt quite a bit like a middle aged person in a sea of barely legal tartlets.
(feel free to check it out- go back to the begining and live the horror that was my LIFE!!

Needless to say, the name just stuck! Accurately, I consider myself to be a "median" age runner but that does not have the same catchy ring to it that "middle" aged runner does, ya know?

Sorry about the short post today, I promise more entertainment tomorrow. I have a lot on my plate as I have my fabulous cousin visiting and we have a fun activity planned. Called "The Worlds Worst Trip To The Dump" and involves the relocation (to the dump) of a large amount of construction materials. Which have been sitting in my basement since 2007.

And y'all thought that I didn't know how to show my houseguests a good time! HAH!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Will the Big 12 happen??

**Update** Yesterday evening I ran 5 miles, on the road, in a snow squall, up massive hills and a 19 MPH headwind (wtf...) at an average pace of 8:22 per mile. TAKE THAT!!****

I had a few simple goals coming into the 2011 "Race" season.

-Run a 10K (did it)
-PR in a 5K (not gon' happen)
-Run a Half Marathon (did 3!!)
-Run 12 races (well... Only about 3 days left in 2011 so it's not looking good!)

As it stands right now I have 9 races under my belt. The 3 halfs. 2 10K's. A 4 miler. And 3 miserable 5K's! (MAN how I hate those 5K's...)

At this time of year there is very little to do and I missed my shot at another Half due to the wounded foot crap of doom and gloom.

I have signed up for two 5K's (UGH.) One local, boring and thoroughly dismal one on November 20 and another, more fun and beer laden opportunity in Mid December.

I would like to make my 12 race goal happen. I just have to decide if it is worth it to take a weekend morning off (loosing lots of money from the clients I would be missing out on) and driving at least 3 hours total for a dreaded 5K.

Time will only tell...

Friday, November 11, 2011

The proof is in the numbers. And the numbers SUCK!

Remember that 5K I ran back in September? The one where I had the feeling that I was running faster than I had EVER RUN BEFORE? The race where despite the fact that I ran as HARD as I could I missed a PR by a decent chunk of time and actually recorded one of my slowest 5K times? (and yes, it was still quick enough. BUT I felt like I was running 7 minute miles and was pretty pissed.)

After that race I ran a Half, hurt my foot and was on the DL for 3 weeks. I needed something new and entertaining to get my thru my recovery runs so I downloaded a couple apps- I map my run and the Nike one. I figured it would be fun to see my routes and to get a handle on how fast/slow I was running.

**A quick reminder that I spent the whole summer burned out on calculating time, distance, splits, incline, whatever. I ran gadget free for months and thought all was well***

WELL. After the recovery period was over I set out to run for real- I wanted to run a few miles, one for warm up then a few closer to race pace.

I must say that I DO NOT appriciate the brutal honesty of Miss Nike. "ONE MILE, NINE MINUTES FORTY SEVEN SECONDS" she informed me. "OH, OK NBD" said I. "That was my "warm up."

Mile two was my chance to kick it up a notch and so I did. I was feeling good, rested, the foot wasn't bugging me, it was a beautiful day and blah de fricking blah. "TWO MILES" Said Miss Nike... "EIGHTEEN MINUTES, FORTY SECONDS."

Oh, hold the fricking phone....

And now we all know WHY I did NOT PR at said September race. HAH! Apparently, devoid of a watch, a treadmill, and a concience my "fast" miles were coming in closer to what I exoect my "warm up" miles to look like. I was a touch horrified but I also react well to brutal honesty after my initial reaction of throwing my iphone to the ground and stomping it. (just kidding, I love my iphone and it is not its fault that I am lazy!)

As I look towards a couple of fall 5K's I am now aware that I am in desperate need of some mile repeats in order to kick my game up a notch. Only time will tell if I have the motivation to make that happen...

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The final countdown. Until my B-Day, that is.

It is good that I can admit that I am a bad blogger. There are no other words for it, I am not "fair" or "poor" I am quite simply, BAD.
My time has been remarkably limited and as I always say (really?) if I have spare time and can either run or blog I'm going to run.

To make up for it, I plan to conduct my own version of the November daily blogging thing which many of you seem so fond of. ONE WEEK. That's all I can manage and I might only get 3 words in! What the hell, it's a start and should get me caught up. The whole thing will reach a climactic end on the biggest day of the YEAR- my Birthday. Whoot!

I leave you now, with horse pics from the end of the year. I plan to attempt to devote my next 6 (count 'em) posts to RUNNING so I thought I'd squeeze these suckers in today.

I LOVE this pic! With my BEST horse friend after we snagged 1st and 2nd at Regionals!

My Little guy- if he isn't just the cutest damn thing!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

My 80/20 Rule

As I mentioned in my last post I really hurt my ankle/foot back on October 3rd. DUH ME.

I saw no reason to bore you all with my daily whinings of a minor, although painful injury so I have been MIA. Also, I was busy wrapping up my equine competitive season in a bang up way. Kicking ass and taking names, very proud of the way that my boys finished up the year! (or, technically started next year. it is now 2012 in the Dressage world.)

...I digress....

I was hurting to the point where walking was questionable from the 3rd to the 14th or so, and advil was my every 4 hour friend. It was not the most comfortable time and I was prone to small fits of yelling at my foot and hollering "creak creak" randomly. (although it wasn't that random- my foot was literally creaking. whatevah..)

I think a good rule of thumb is that if 100% of your day is spent in foot pain one should not run. Especially when the application of one's running shoes makes one scream and writhe in agony.

Slowly, the pain started to decrease to a 50/50 ratio- still with a hearty dose or several of advil a day. Finally, on Monday I was able to spend a FULL day advil free and felt that my pain was finally down to the magic number- 80% painless 20% slight discomfort.

Well hot damn! Time to run a marathon! PR in a 10K! GO NUTSSSSS!

In reality! On Wednesday I hit the road for a little "run" and made it exactly six tenths of a mile in fairly bad pain. Crap! When I pulled off my shoes I was all better though, no lingering side effects (odd.) On Friday I tried running in my "old old" shoes and it was a bit better- I made it thru an awkward, and walk break riddled 1.5 miles- again with no ill effects. Today I threw on the "old" shoes and found that they were somewhat better than the "new" shoes so gave them a try. I made it thru a slow 3 miles- but only needed to walk for pain reduction during the first mile. I ran the last 2 miles at a slow and steady pace with very little ouch factor.

Which is good news if I do say so myself...

I still have not needed to pop any pills since Monday. And for that, my liver thanks me.

Hopefully I am over the hump and can get back down to the business of running less like an invalid and more like a middleaged woman!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Running with The Kids: Part 3

It's that time of year again. My cute little town has a cute little 5K slash nasty chilli cook off. nothing inspires me to feel vommy more than the thought of chilli at the end of any mileage...

Last year this race was a study in fall weather. It was no more than 40 degrees out with a stiff 35 MPH headwind. It was rather brutal really, but allowed me to PR with (as usual) no practice. Being that I have been running a good amount I was ready to go for the effing gold this year, win the womens race, PR (maybe) and walk off with a gallon of maple syrup.

Then my plans changed.
Last Monday I hurt my foot. Don't ask me how (because it is too damn embarassing) but I did, and in a big way. Figuring that I'd be pretty well 6 days later I modified the plan by asking the kiddos if they wanted to join me. Everybody was too wimpy except for good old 8th grade (who has grown a staggering amount this summer but despite what this picture tells you I AM still taller than she.) This was 8th Grades FIRST 5K! Yay for HER!

8th Grade did not get the memo about the "scary face." She is embarassed by me, as any 8th grader worth their salt should be.

Have to make a comment about the weather. It was HOTTER THAN HOT. Seriously, it was 80 freaking degrees which is hot for this time of year in Maine. (reason #2 that I was rather pleased that a fast race was NOT in order.)

Reason #1 that I was pleased that I was not going for the gold? My damn foot. Hurt like a bitch! I was not convinced that I was going to be able to run at all, and I gave 8th Grade some good instructions incase I had to lie down on the side of the road and wait for Stoneham Rescue to come and save me.
As it turned out the foot did not feel any worse than normal so off I gimped. I did indeed run like peg-leg-Pete but what can ya do?

It looked like little 8th grade was going to run a pretty decent race! (note: she hasn't run since the 4th of July, bless her little heart.) We kept up a casual, but totally do-able 10-11ish minute mile. Around mile two she came to a grinding halt "I am going to THROW UP! Maybe we should WALK?" I think she thought I was going to be mad. Which I clearly was, since that is how I roll- getting all pissed at poor little kids and whatnot.... So off we walked, and I tried to keep 8th Grades mind off things like chilli, which can easily induce vomiting in the most stoic of runners.

We ended up walking about 7/10ths of the last mile but made a good push for the finish. To take 8th Grade's mind off her Vom-Dot-Com situation I babbled on in full storytelling mode for the last mile. ....that will teach her to walk, hehehe..... As we rounded the corner to the finish another one of my little students (a 4th grader!) blew by us with some serious speed, "Run 8th Grade, RUN!" I shouted "Are you REALLY going to let this HAPPEN??" OFF she sped, as I laughed hysterically at this epic finish to our super slow effort! In the end 8th Grade got a conscience (silly) and 4th Grade snuck infront of her. Gosh, we really need to teach that kid that there is NO MERCY!

Overall, not a bad effort at all! 4th Grade finished in 33:08 (she's gonna be a hot ticket) 8th Grade finished in 33:10 (with practice she's gonna kick ass!) and I laughed my way in just behind them in 33:11.

8th Grade did NOT throw up so no vommy award for her this time! She is excited to do it again (which makes me happy!) and we are going to try to shave about 3 minutes off the time at the next race- which seems reasonable if we can fit in a bit of practice.

I find that I really enjoy running with the kiddos, it is good to see kids getting into a healthy activity and being so excited about it.

Here we are, showing off our Zumba Strength! RAWR!!
We went home and ate some candy.
The END.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

My Odd Childhood Fears!

I read somebody's post about Odd Childhood Fears yesterday and it made me think of days gone by. In terror!

One must know that I was an oddly practical child and was really not scared of much. However, to say that I had a vivid imagination is an understatement so (on occasion) things got a bit out of hand in my little head.

1: The "Spider Book." My parents were all into nature so they had books of shockingly vivid photos of birds, bugs, animal turds and... SPIDERS. I was SO horrified by this book that I did not like to be in the same room as it, let alone TOUCH it. Eeeekkkkkkk. I can still feel the creepy crawlies now! (they still have this book and to be honest, I feel rather the same way about it.)

2: E.T. What! This was supposed to be a fun family feel good movie? Oh eff that! I was absolutely terrified of E.T., his freakishly long phalanges and his creeper creeper little voice. (and to be honest yet again- I still feel this way.) The movie even put me off my Reeses for a time.

3: The "Child Eating Monster" in my closet. I was a child, need I say more? This dude was badass and scared me until I was about 23 years old. (who am I kidding! I still close the closet door before bed. The Huz understands completely.)

4: The "Detatched hand under the bed". UGHHHHHH. Imagine a cold, pale, clammy detatched hand under your bed. He probably kind of flips and flops around in a half dead way until he sees you coming! Then YARGH! He'll jump out and grab your ankle and drag you down! (to WHERE? There is no DOWN!) Anyway. Yeah.

5: "The Pit and the Pendulum." Well no shit, what child wouldn't be scared of this? Gotta love my Grandma who thought that this was a very age appropriate scary story for a couple of teeny tiny kids. (oddly, it did not scare me much at first and my Sister and I often asked for repeat readings- complete with "voices" and "sound effects!" it became MUCH more hair raising as the years went on...)

6: The "Skunk" in the corner of my room behind my plant. Thanks to my cousin I became rather convinced that there was a super scary skunk in the corner of my room. Whenever there was a little sound I'd be all "AK! SKUNK!" for many years. We still talk about that guy...

So there you have it. My top childhood fears! Childhood fears are much more fun to think about than our top adult fears of going broke, breaking bones (the hand under the bed... the skunk...)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

My LOVE/HATE list!

You know how sometimes a period of time goes by and you hear so many people say "OMG! You are a runner/reader/eater of foods/fab person! you should try so-and-so because you would just love it!" Time marches on, you continue to hear these cries of joy about the newest and the greatest thing of the hour and you more or less avoid the whole shenanigan laden minefield. Maybe you even roll your eyes a bit and figure that when the fad dies out you will still have those dollars in your pocket that the rest of the world dumped into the new get-fit-quick scam. (or whatever.)

.....oh... that's just me? well moving on then......

Over the course of the summer I decided that I was going to be a yes-sayer and try things that I suspected that I would hold in disdain. Why not? What could happen? Life is too short to always be practical and sensible. Here is no particular order are a few of the things on my brand new, tried and tested "Love it and hate it" list!

Love It- OK, I love Harry Potter. We all know it and I am not ashamed to admit that I know pretty much everything about Harry and his band of friends. When people started pestering me to read "The Hunger Games" I rolled my eyes and wrote it off as another "Twilight" debacle of horror. .....And was I ever WRONG..... The books are pure genius, smart, well written, blatantly politically incorrect and the final book does not end with "everything" working out. They are cutting edge lit in the young adult field and I was jaw-droppingly delighted to read the series in less than 3 days. Read em. They are the bomb freaking diggity.

Didn't love it or hate it- I caved and read "The Help" It was fine and did not change my life at all. Do feel free to argue, many people have....

HATE it- Thorlo Experia socks. Dudes, do you LIKE running on mattresses? Cos I don't.

HATE it- Shot Blocks. GU. Energy Gummies in general. Actually, you know what I hate? Eating while running. So I don't anymore, eff it.

HATE IT- Zumba. My sister talked me into a class. (remember, she talked me into running which I LOVE) We all lined up in some gym and the instructor started throwing down dance moves straight out of one of those movies about (ummmm) kids dancing on the streets of Havana or whatevs. I stood there is silent horrified disbelief, watching in fear as the rest of the class attempted to do some semblance of what the Dance Queen was doing. As the dance became more and more apocalyptic (and as I flailed around, laughing hysterically in the manner of Elaine on Seinfeld) I looked over at my Sister and said "WHAT the FUCK is THIS SHIT??" That summed up how that went for me. Boom.

LOVE it- Salmon on pizza. holy hell, is that good. Go to David's in Portland, ME for the BEST Salmon, Asparagus and Goat Cheese pizza in the WHOLE world!

LOVE it- Running however I feel like, training plans be damned!

LOVE it...... training plans......

And the final HATE: Saucony Kinvara's. Thank God I did not buy a pair. Just running around in a friends pair was all it took.. (feel free to argue the point, I don't mind.)

LOVE it- (these things are not new. but still.) My own fab house, my own fab dogs and the bag of kit kat in my fridge. Gotta love the little things!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Maine Half Marathon: The official slow race report!

After my epic beer race report of yesterday I thought it would be prudent and adult of me to type up something a bit more legit for today. Don't ask me why, as my post yesterday pretty much summed it up!

Let's backtrack for some second.
- I did not train for this shiz AT ALL. My last run over 7-8 miles was in APRIL. I did NOT follow a training plan, I did NOT PLAN at all!
-This meant that I did not have time to suffer any over training injuries (well, duh. I have been on a "taper" since May!)

Let's now take a look at Sunday morning.
I woke up with a fresh shiny new cold. REALLY??? Really. Oh well.
The weather was amazingly bad and it is hard to amaze me with bad weather. OH WELL.

Off I went in the dark, rain and cold. I was feeling pretty good about things because why the hell not? Nothing says "here I come" like an old, untrained sick person, right?

I snuck to the start in the nick of time (parking took a bit) but what luck... It was pouring buckets so I managed to stay fairly dry until the gun went off. Being that I got there last I was way back in the pack at the start- I think it took over 3 minutes to actually cross the start line!
(good think I put my number on sideways so that it could be read properly. Other MM participants will know what I mean.)

Before mile 1 arrived my feet were already more wet than they have ever been before. As the race progresses I was seeing some horrific blisters on other runners- I have never been so happy to have good socks!

It rained so damn hard! I had on a "waterproof" windbreaker and I ran with the hood pulled up over my head the whole time. It didn't do a bit of good as I was still completely and totally drenched at the end. It was also freezing cold and around mile 4 I began to have serious doubts about the wisdom of walking at all. I was quite nervous that I would get so chilled that I would not be able to get warm again...

I ran at SUCH an easy pace that running the whole thing began to seem like a viable option at the 1/2 turnaround point. I took a moment to evaluate and honestly declared that I felt quite well. VERY wet, but good. At this point I had had to pause once to re-tie my soggy shoes and I had walked thru one water station (thanks to the amazing volunteers who stood around for hours in the awful weather!)

Remembering back to my last half I knew that the second half might sneak up and get me. I still have vivid and unpleasant memories of having to talk myself into taking every step of the final 5 miles last time... I did not enjoy that. As it turned out this time I had plenty of gas left in the tank- remarkable considering my lack of long runs. During the second half I ran each mile faster than the previous one, passing people along the way.

I knew that making it in under 2:10 was going to be almost impossible given my 10K split but I ran along in a comfortable pace, checking out the scenery, laughing at the beer drinking boys at mile 11 who (from their porch) screamed "whooooo-hooooo" whenever a group of ladies ran by, and in general really enjoying my run.

As much as I enjoyed the whole epic 13.1 I was still glad to see the finish and VERY pleased to run under the clock in 2:06:50 (final net time was 2:04:09) As you all know this is MUCH slower than my PR but MUCH better than I had ever hoped for!

I had a lot to think about on my drive home.
-Clearly I made the right choice to run within my "comfort zone" as the odds of an injury with my lack of training were higher than I would have liked.
-I enjoyed this run tremendously, head cold and weather and all...

And this makes me wonder, should I just be cool with running slower than I feel I should in the name of "enjoying" it? Usually I would scream a resounding "NO" as I feel mediocrity in the name of comfort is one of the seven deadly sins!

But let's face it people: I am no elite runner nor will I ever be. Why push myself to the point of vomiting and burnout? Perhaps I can find a balance- I would prefer to be finishing in under 2 hours (seems do-able) but perhaps kick aside the goal of consistent 1:45 finishes? (insert some serious doubt *here*)

This was a whole new 13.1 experience for me and one that I honestly thought was terrific. I enjoyed listening to the conversations around me, I liked the fact that I had given myself permission to stop whenever I needed to, and I liked the fact that there was no high pressure and challenging to obtain goal hanging over my head (I have enough of that in the equine show arena, thanks!)

Anyway. I finished, got a tinfoil blanket, ate several bagels, drank a Gatorade and two chocolate milks, went home, ate half a bag of caramel creams and a slice of salmon, goat cheese and asparagus pizza, took a pile of cold meds and sat down.


Monday, October 3, 2011

The BEST race report EVER.

I have often thought that I should have made a name for myself as a beer blogger. I expect that I would have had far more to talk about on a daily basis, if nothing else...
Here is a mini race report from yesterday, using some of my favorite things,

As we all know, I had forgotten about this race because I am a:

Perhaps being a bit of a fool is a good thing. It brings the old ego down a bit and keeps me from running around yelling:

Knowing that there is NO chance of finishing in less than 4 hours also keeps me from being a big old:

One of my biggest concerns, and rightfully so, was being struck down by the dreaded and hard to avoid: (Luckily I was able to avoid the krampus! yay!)

So. In the:

I gazed out upon the EPIC weather. Best described as a:

After 0.2 miles my feet were so waterlogged that I suspected that I had misplaced my sneakers and was instead wearing:

I finally fisnished! And in 2:04:09 which isn't too shabby considering that I expected to walk the whole thing (didn't walk at all). The BEST news is that I felt GREAT, which was a welcome change from the normal feeling of: (a polite way to say shit??

I was pleased to be done, but really had a very good race. I wrapped myself up in one of those tinfoil blankets, ate some bagles, drank a gatorade and left. Much to my great delight I was home just in time for:


A "real" race report to follow, not that I really left anythng out!

Thursday, September 29, 2011


Math: I hate you. Barely made it thru Algebra for Dummies in Highschool, for serious!

However. To figure out how badly I'm gonna PW at the upcoming Maine Half I took out my calculator for some addition. I did not wish to have to take off my shoes to use my toes, ya know?

Al-righty oh. My PR for a half is what? 1:45:48? Or is it 1:48:45? I plan to look into this. This was back in the day when I trained for such activities, was in lethally good shape and could keep up a brutal pace for hours at a time. I might have thrown up afterwards but what's a little Vom between friends??

This time: Blissfully unaware, unprepared, woefully out of shape, sadly slow.

The plan. Walk the whole damn thing. Oh wait a sec, the marathoner will finish before I do. No thanks.

The REAL plan: Run a few miles super slow. Walk a mile. Run a few miles super slow. Sit down, Cry. Walk a mile. Run a mile? Take a nap.

Where the calculator comes into play: Say I manage to run my miles at 9:15 (fair guess) and walk a mile in what? 16-17 minutes? How the hell long does it take to walk a mile?? Anyway this is how it might play out-

Run 4 miles (I can do it!!)- That will take about 37 minutes. I'm cutting myself some slack here because there is bound to be start line congestion.

Walk a mile- 16 minutes.

Run 3 miles (maybe...) 28ish minutes

Walk a mile- 4 hours (or 16 minutes) (we're at mile 9!)

Run 2 miles- 19 minutes cos I suck

Walk a mile- 17 minutes cos I suck more (are we at mile 12?)

Run the final 1.1 in a huge burst of speed!!! or in 10 minutes because who am I kidding??

That has me finishing in 2:20 which seems VERY optimistic. I think I may have missed an entire mile in there somewhere, maybe mile 0-1 which I always forget about (don't laugh.) Feel free to check my math...

I think I'll shoot for 2:30. That gives me 45 extra minutes which I don't think is enough!

We shall see....

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Belated Race Recap, Komen race 9/11

I missed this race last year for two reasons. One, I was injured and homestly lame as lame could be. I thought I might go and walk the damn thing then the shit hit the fan. My Grandmother passed the day before (9/11/10)... We all knew it was a matter of days but it was a dark day, regardless.

Onward to the 2011. Not only did I want to make up for the fact that I had to bail due to being 8 legged lame but it was a great race to run to honor the memory of my Grandma, and sadly, two other close frineds who lost their cancer battles in 2010. Suck-O. This felt like an important race to me (combine that with the obvious fact that it was the 10 year mark of 9/11 and there were all KINDS of emotions running thru my little head. Shoot!)

It was a nice day. I had been running a good amount. In the back of my head I thought probably too much, as it is a known and proven fact that these old legs can only run a decent 5K after having at least a week off. Logic and reason at its finest? Regardless of the logic it is indeed a proven fact.

Annoyingly, I did not have time to pick up my race number the day before (sorry, Portland is a bit of a drive from where I live) so I had to arrive horribly early and then kick tires, pace around and get VERY bored and just a touch crabby. The race had a super late start- 10:00- which was good for not having to get up at the AC of D BUT not so awesome for the "waiting around for all damn day."

Finally things got going. I started off a little fast due to my desire to just GET GOING but then I settled into a more reasonable pace. Had a bit of trouble getting enough air- my allergies were really the worst I have felt in years (yuck.) There was no clock or people who helpfully shout your time at you during any part of the course so I felt a bit lost, and as though I was running blind. However, I felt like I was keeping up a very respectable pace and actually felt confident that this could have PR potential! (at this point, I can accurately guess my mile per minute speed within a second or two as a general rule. Or NOT, as we will soon see...)

Coming into the final stretch I had just enough gas in the tank for a little push so off I went, until I caught a glimpse of the clock. It read, shockingly, "23:18" and I still had a few hundred feet to go. I was BAFFLED and seriously came almost to a full halt in my horror! Disgusted, I steadily ran under the clock in an abysmal 23:30 (give or take a second or two- I was excluded from the final results due to some chaos at the finish. I could have called them and asked to have it fixed, but I didn't want to admit to a final time of 23:30. GRRRRRR)

Honestly, I was unimpressed. To feel that I ran well and FAST and to come in 30 seconds slower than my PR and 15 seconds slower than my average pace for a 5K very irratating. I was prepared (for a change) well fed (but not TOO well fed!) and feel at this point that I can tell how fast I'm running... GUESS NOT!

OH WELL. In the big picture who gives a crap, right? I ran for a great cause, enjoyed a nice day, got some excercise, and had some snacks at the end.


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Oh HELLO. The story of the shocking email.

I had a wonderful plan, back in oh- May, June or perhaps even a bit earlier than that.

I would finish up my equine competitive season (which was freaking amazing, more on that later) transition to bigger and better miles on the road and run a Half a few weeks later. With that in mind I signed up all nice and early for a Half on October 22. GO ME. Way to plan ahead.

Over the weekend I was having a nice mental chat with myself. It went a little something like this:

Me- Looking good me! I haven't been able to put in a ton of mileage due to the "horse show situation" but I have had a few good weeks of legit running. Some hills, some 7 milers and a little 5K (more on that later.)

Phone- "jingle jingle" indicating email.

Me: Moseys towards phone, still congratulating myself on my fabulocity, fashion sense and wisdom. "I'll get in a few runs early this week to break myslef back in (and NOT to break myself, mind you) do 10-11 miles over the weekend, try for another 10-11 in CT over the weekend of the 15th (horse show) then I should be fine to finish a little slow, but respectably well for someone of my advanced years. (and yes, when I chat to myslef in my head I do indeed speak in run on sentances.)


Me: Looks at email. Sees race email. Takes no notice and moves on. forward to later that day........

Reads email: The race is coming up! (me, smugly: YEAH in a few WEEKS!") Packet pick up on SATURDAY OCTOBER 1st.

ME: WTF??? wtf? W....T....F....


The race is this Sunday. How did this happen? Here are the choices:

1- I am an idiot

2- In my head "After the competitive season" meant AFTER the show mid October. Evidently, back in the early Spring I was probably just thinking post-Regionals. I dunno!

3- Really, it is very easy to mix up the 2nd with the 22nd. Right?


I ate some bacon. Freaked out for one minute. Said eff it.
See you all at the Maine Half this weekend. More on my plan for Epic world domination in the upcoming days.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Things I learn Along the way...

Things that I learn along the way.. Part. Two? Three? Twelve? Who knows!

1: Last summer I discovered that I simply did not have time to run as much as I wished to. I felt guilty about this, overdid it when I had time and hurt myself badly enough to have to take about 5 weeks off. I remembered all of this (because I am so wise) and tried hard not to repeat the chaos this year. So far, success.

2: Life comes in this order:
a: Work
b: Work
c: other things, like family stuff and the thing I like to call running
d: blogging (don't know how y'all manage to do it daily or even weekly!)

3: Every run does not have to be epic. It does not have to be hill work, speed work, a 10 miler, or even need to feel very good (and believe me, it doesn't.) NEXT year I will remember these words of wisdom!

4: Apparently I can still run a 23:14 5K with no practice. Maybe I just WON'T practice!

5: However. If one wishes to PR in a 10K or if one has a Half on the brain then practice is advisable (so sad.)

6.a: If the run actually feels good keep running in the manner of Forrest Gump. What could happen!? (see words of wis #1...)

6.b: Hmm. So this year I can spontaniously bust out some decent mileage and feel fine. I wonder if it has to do with all the miles I put in last winter and muscle memory? It is like that with horses- once they lay down a base of muscle structure they can get back to hard work quickly after some down time. Well, much faster then when you bring them into good condition the first time around at any rate. Is it like this with people? Who the hell knows...

There are my words of wisdom.
The End.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Beach To Beacon 2011: The Day I conquered the WORLD. Not!

Have a little story to tell before getting down to the business of actual running/racing/moving in the manner of a turtle, which is what I call racing.

First: This blog had a few title options. 1: "The Day I saw a lot of strange penis" I decided that would earn me a lot of scary blog stalkers which would be most undesirable. However, we will return to this topic shortly as I wish to bring up the fact that girls can pee without waving their junk all around for the world to see... Other contenders were "The race I slept through" (I did not I went slow enough so that I could have.) "What do Ice Cream and I have in common? We both melt in the HEAT." And so on and so forth.

Second:. Last week... Week three of the busiest 3 weeks of the year. These are the 3 weeks of Summer when it is effing balls to the walls around here! We (my staff and I) have our normal camp riders, which equals about 60 a week. We have another camp group each of those 3 weeks which equals about 80 more rides during each session. Not to mention the fact that I also have my year round students to teach and a couple horses to train! It is NONSTOP MADNESS.

Needless to say, I forgot that the Beach To Beacon was last Saturday.

Luckily my Dad said something about it on Thursday, just enough time for me to appreciate the fact that in the past month I had put in 4 runs. FOUR, count 'em. And luckily in enough time for me to haul ass to Cape Elizabeth and snag my race number.
For the 48 hours that I had to enjoy my pre race excitement I waffled back and forth repeatedly on whether or not I was going to do it. LAME, I know. In the end, I decided that anybody could run 6 miles and that it would be a waste of a hard earned race number to wuss out- so off I went, at 5 AM on Saturday morning to try to beat the traffic, the heat, and at least 1 person so as not to come in dead last.

Similar to stories of childbirth, one never hears positive tales of successful trips to the start of the B2B. The traffic is notorious, the road closures are endless and parking is supposed to be a complete shit show. Perhaps it is because I was completely filled with fear and horror which inspired me to leave 43 hours early but I had no issues. Got to park at the start, hit no traffic on the way and only had issues with the dire boredom which happens when one arrives at a race 687 days early. Egads!

Now, on to the story of seeing far more man junk then I would EVER EVER want to see EVER. Too many people plus not enough porta potties equals peeing in the woods which I am not scared of. What am I scared of? After discreetly doing my thang, turning around and seeing multiple men peeing all happily with their bits and pieces fully exposed. Now, I'm no prude but I actually squeaked in horror and fled the woods as if a monster was in hot pursuit! AK! Never in my life have I seen so much strange penis and never in my life do I wish to again. Sorry boys, but COME ON!!

After that I was scared enough to run slightly faster than a 12 minute mile... Only slightly though! It was hot as shit, so hot that I was sweating bullets after mile 1 which is very unpleasant.

It was a REALLY nice run, it was REALLY pretty and flat and fun with tons of spectator participation. Good times! HOT TIMES. SO HOT...

I felt just fine throughout but really, who doesn't feel fine when running an 8:20 minute mile. The good news is that I ran the exactly same mile every single mile. It was nice to be done at 6 miles as well, it was no day to go sprinting my way across the universe in a marathon like style.

Made it across the finish on 52:11. Not terrible. Not great. But well deserved given the fact that practice is not my friend!

I ate 3 slices of watermelon, 2 cartons of chocolate milk, a package of crackers and then I left.


Sunday, July 17, 2011

Ultra Marathoning with my cousin

Hah! Made ya look, didn't I?
Ultra Marathoning is about as likely to happen around here as hell freezing over, or the humidity levels dropping. Ugh!

But really. We headed out on Saturday AM (A sweltering Saturday BTW) to the infamous Lovell Old Home days 5k. Then we made pirate faces. It is in our genetic code to do so. The Cuz missed the memo about the FACE that goes along with the hook. Silly boy/man!

OK. This is us looking normal. As normal as we get...

So on to the good stuff. We decided that it would be a great idea to race because I have not been practicing my running very well lately and he has not been running for years. Overall, we felt very prepared. Who cares, right? No way we are going to do our best in the 80 plus degree insanity anyways.

Decent crowd at the little race this year! About 50 more runners than last yeat for a total of 150 finishers. Neither of us had any expectations and decided to run at a comfortable pace and to meet up at the end. The course is a funny beast- the first mile is easy and flat, the second mile has a hill and a big curve and the last mile is fully dirt (which was a bitch to run on this year- slippery, rocky and a mess!) and a hairpin turn as the course is a lollipop. Pretty much impossible to manage negative splits but whatevs, we were out to have fun!

We ended up doing pretty darn well.

Me- 23:13 (1 second FASTER than last year with NO speed work. Hmmmm?)

33rd place and the 5th placed woman. 3rd in age group (damn fast 30 somethings!)

(Edited: I thought I was 3rd but was actually 2nd! It was 10 year age group blocks too, which stinks...)

Him: 26:04, 60th place- (sadly in the fastest male age group so no age award.)

We ate some donuts and went home.

The end.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Racing with the kiddos

Well Hot Damn, an actual running post in the so called running blog.

Don't get used to it. (just kidding. sort of.)

The 4 on the 4th. A big old mess of a race that fully overloads the local town's capacity, porta potties, parking situation and road space. A damn fine time if you ask me.

I did a pretty bang up job in this race last year, finishing in the top 200 and coming in somewhere around 31:30 or so. (I admit that I am too lazy to double check that. Go ahead and sue me for my pride, that is all I have!)

Different ball game this year. The kids (we'll call them 8th Grade and 9th Grade for obvious reasons) came along for the ride. Good, athletic kids who play sports (8th grade is a National Competitive Cheer Champion. And a fine Equestrian) (9th Grade plays ALL the 9th grade sports and is agressive enough to make me look passive. yikes!) Who also rides horses, obviously. Oh, and they have never run a day in their lives. Something that I know a little bit about. Yeah.....

We set off to have a good time and to try to run the whole thing, not vomit and finish as close to a 10-11 minute per mile pase as possible.

Gotta say, those kids started off stromg. Clocked in the first mile at 10:10 and all seemed well. Shortly after the one mile mark the wheels began to fall off the bus a teeniest bit for 9th grade. I have to suspect that she may have some excercise induced asthma (paging Dr. Middleaged....) Honestly, I only guess that because her breathing sounded so similar to people I know who are affected by said situation. OK. Moving on.

Mile 1-2 was ok in roughly 12 minutes. A pace that fely arduously slow for me, but I reminded myself that this race was about the greater good of the youth of America and not about me. And really, I was JUST fine with this. They were a riot to run with, and so cute!

At the end of mile 2 I asked 9th grade if she needed a medic. She did not. We walked, drank water. Recovered. Took 13 plus minutes to get to the start of the last mile which I thought was solid, considering the break that we took for medical purposes.

The kids really woman-ed up for the last mile and kicked it into high gear for another 10 minute mile. I was proud, they were pumped to get to the finish line! We finished in 45:55 and as much as I secretly cringed on the outside I was (of course) all pumped up! The best part is that both of them are excited to try again at some point in the near future. I fully expect that little 8th grade will run another 4 miler at the end of the month. 9th grade was a bit slower to commit, and I after chatting with her Mom the wheezing issue might get a checkup first.

But really, a good time was had by all!! (and here we are!) And yes. I am the same size as tiny children. Do not judge...

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Look Who is BACK!

I am completely shocked that everyone has not unfriended me. Thanks kids, you are really the best!

So. What has been going on in my world of chaos? Well. In short, chaos!
This is the time of year when I work 14 hour days 6 days a week. When I run around so damn much all day that the only thing I can run to when the day is done is dinner and a big fricking beer. (oh sure, get up earlier! not me, not NEVAH. I get up at 4:45 as it is and it makes me want to poke out my eyes with a red hot poker.)


Despite all this insanity, my renewed dislike of the sweat slick that runs down my bod in the 80+ degree heat (and not just while trying to run, mind you...) and the fact that my weekly mileage total is about -47 I am hitting the road on Monday for the infamous and ever hilly 4 on the 4th. the cool thing about this is that two of my teenage riding students are jumping on board for the helluva fun good time that we are clearly going to have. Oh yes. So FUN! SO FUN!

But really. I look forward to this and am ever so tickled that I have opened their eyes to more than foul language, bitter sarcasm and beer drinking. (I kid. Really, around the little ones I am as wholesome as Ma Ingalls on the prairie. For serious...)

I look forward to posting pictures of the three of us showboating like fools because that is how we roll. I look forward to knowing that the race will be OVER after 4 miles that I will not have 9 more to go. And I look forward to having the 4th of July OFF!!!

By the way. I fully dominated the horse show circuit this Spring if y'all were wondering. Tons of fun, and I'm pretty pumped for the fall season of Finals and what not. Good times.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Puppy Pictures!

Here he is! After stringing all of you along for many weeks I thought I'd post a baby pic of my new little munchkin. Love his face. You can't appriciate how teensy he was because I am roughly the size and shape of a 5th grader. But hot damn, if he is not cute then I don't know what is!

We have not seen the sun in 14 days.
Ah well, who needs it?
To spare you all from my weather musings (and yes, I'm from Maine! ALL we do is moan about the weather. Seriously, we enjoy it!) I'll just post more puppy pics. Prepare to DIE from THE CUTE!

Here he is! Lester Danger my-last-name. Doing what he did best for the first few days, which was to sleep under a chair with a friend.

Lester playing with his big bro Rufus. Clearly badass.

AKKKK SO CUTE! 8 weeks old playing in the yard. Well... sitting...

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Crappy Spring Weather

The dreary weather is getting old, and I'm getting sick of seeing it!
I suppose that the one good thing is that 44 degrees and drizzle really does a hell of a job keeping the bugs away. UGHHHHH.

Let's backtrack a bit. I made an offhand comment about loosing weight post-half training insanity. I do feel the need to clarify that I certainly do not need to loose weight, nor am I excited to see it happen! The only time that my weight goes up is when I am seriously muscular and the only time it goes down is when I relax the intensity of the training. Or when I'm vomming for hours on end, or when work gets really nuts and (Heaven Forbid) I have to miss meals.

There is simply no denying the fact that day after day of this shiznit crapola weather is really testing my good mood. After spending the whole freaking day slogging along working outside in it the LAST thing I want to do is slap on the old running shoes and get soaked to the bone. MEH! So I'm taking the bull by the horns and heading out right NOW to sprint thru the gloomy countryside. (which means that before my next client I'll have to do something about the soggy clothing, frizzball hair and disgusted attitude.) **SIGH**

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Three Things Thursday

Or... TAKE THAT! Thursday.
As in... Take THAT on my promise for a Warty Wednesday post! Bottom line, I refuse to blog from my iphone and I've been on the go 24/7 and that's what I would have been stuck with. Awesome-o...

1: Since I have quit running 30 miles per week some amusing things have happened. I have lost about 4 pounds (which adds up to 2 each leg. I was a BEAST!) I can also walk straight down stairs now instead of doing a hoppidy-waddle due to my knees and hips being chronically flat busted. I was in such a habit of doing my downhills in an odd manner that I recently took time to relearn how to take stairs like a lady.

2: The weather is KICKASS for running and I must say that I continue to enjoy running short distances whenever and wherever and how ever fast I damn well please. The bugs on the other hand are completely out of control and I may need a blood transfusion if they keep sucking on me at this rate...

3: Good weather equals summer running gear. I had forgotten how annoyingly swishy some of my shorts are. I hate to hear them the same way that I HATE to hear my race number crinkling and swooshing. GRRRR. Time to buy some nice quiet shorts, or to get a grip on reality.

In other news I'm packing up the boys and heading to Mass for the first show of the year. The older boy should be a rock star because he's 15 and knows how to act, bless his little chestnut heart. The younger little monster is on the fence about his plans for behavior- it is his first show ever so (as always) I have realistic expectations. He has a long time to grow up and just needs to get out and see what the big kid world is all about!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Monday Mayhem!

Yes, yes. You all are into Triple Tangent Tuesdays, Friday Favorites and the like.


Mayhem Monday.
Warty Wednesday.
Take THAT Thursday.

I am very cool. Very inventive. Very Hip.

Mayhem is a bit of a fib. It was my motto for the pre-show horse training this morning, as one should throw a lot of terror at one's pony pre show so they are glad to get the hell off the farm. Really, when you have been around the horse block as many times as I have that statement reeks of logic and reason.

Just got back from a nice warm run of a sensible distance, if not terrain. 4 miles still seems so delightfully short and simple after the months and months of long distance training. It was lovely, kind of sweaty and buggy and my feet are not completely healed (come back on Wednesday. You should already know why!) But still.... (where did the lighter fluid come from?)

I feel myself getting the urge to sneak to a race (not sure if I could sneak since I just advertised this interest on the Internet. Hmmm.) I had a feeling that after an easy month I'd get the bug back and I can feel it! Not really sure what I'll do before the 4th of July, perhaps it will be something spontaneous and last minute? And under 13.1 miles FOR SHO.

My puppy is GREAT! YOU GUYS! No pics, I'm so sorry but my Dad stole the camera before I could load them. GAHD, like its his or something... (it is.)

On a final note. Even though I have been supremely bad at commenting on all of your wonderful blogs lately please know that I am reading and enjoying.

(and don't get too excited now, but I will be back on Wednesday. For real.)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


You guys! Thanks so much for sticking around and not un-following me during my lengthy and absurd dissapearences....

Spring is here! The roads are lookin' good. From afar, as I really wouldn't know.

I kid! Somewhat... Since I no longer have 13.1 miles of terror looming on the horizon I no longer feel pressured to put insane mileage on my shoes. Damn good thing too since I no more have time to run extreme miles than I have time to take a nap. Or wash my hair. Or do laundry, which is piling up in a most alarming fashion...

The reason for this? NEW PUPPY TIME! (pics to come, promise.) He's a great guy but between the extra babysitting and the fact that the older dog needs an ativan I've been running myself ragged! So look- I HAVE been running. Yeah suckahs!

In reality I have put in a few nice, 4ish milers which have been delightfully low pressure. I run as fast or slow as I feel inclined. I look at the scenery. I listen to all the springey noises and...ummm... joy radiates thru my very being?? Nah, but it is nice to hit the road in some nicer weather. Not to mention the fact that I'm done before my legs even eake up to the fact that they are doing something!

So. Please don't stop following me. As the busy season continues I am going to try to blog 3 times per week (yes, yes. That is two times more than I have been lately. But I'm gonna make it happen!) Puppy pics are coming, horse show insanity in less than 2 weeks will keep you all amused and coming back for more (on the running blog) and I have plans to run a race again soon. (a race against the fricking clock maybe as I struggle to get shiz done....!)

Friday, April 22, 2011

How to maintain sanity within the chaos: Part one

My schedule/life has quite simply been in utter chaos this week!

Perhaps that is a touch dramatic, I suppose that chaos is pushing the limits of reality but to say that I have been exceptionally busy is an understatement. I, right now, am at the 100% limit of what I can manage business wise on my own without calling in help (and help has another job, damn her!)

An important side note: I AM NOT complaining about being busy!! Being busy keeps me in the black, keeps me entertained and from causing too many shenanigans and bottom line: I have a business and one must BE busy to BE in business. Duh. Come to me if you want an epic 5 year plan, because there it is right there. Boom...

I am NOT exaggerating when I declare that the weather has been outrageously horrific. Pouring down rain, 34 degrees with hail and (??) Thunder! 40 MPH winds. Imagine all nasty weather- minus tornadoes- and that is what we have had here. YUCK.

After my little run earlier in the week I have been kept away from the pavement due to the diabolical combination of all the things I just mentioned. Crazy, I tell you!

This has caused me to take a moment to reflect upon my priorities, time management (the weather) and of course, one of my favorite topics: Excuses VS Reasons.

In my line of work I hear a lot of excuses as to why things are going wrong, or not progressing as they should. It amazes me sometimes the balderdash that I hear pouring from peoples mouths as to why they have not practiced AT ALL between training sessions.

I don't like this. BUT, if improving is not your priority then fine! If someone is a casual equestrian then whatever makes them enjoy their time in the saddle is cool with me. BUT, if someone has serious competitive 9or other) aspirations and are still making silly excuses then I try to encourage a more workmanlike mindset.

I was wondering this week if I was falling into the excuses trap in my running life. I took a few points into consideration.

-I am a hobby runner. This will NEVER be a career move for me unless mediocrity and zero money ends up being something that I find desirable. Hmmm?

-I am NOT waking up in the morning saying "OMG! I'm gonna run today" and then spending hours procrastinating, whiling away my time on facebook, or otherwise avoiding the issue. NO, I am waking up in the morning going "HOLY S**tballs! I hope that I can find a second within the madness to eat meals and such!"

-I need to be sure to have my priorities straight. I MUST work (obvi) I MUST take the extra time during these Spring months to be sure that the horses who about to begin their competitive season are fully tuned up. And I MUST have time at the end of the day to see The Huz and Rufus. The Huz has limited patience for the way that my job keeps me away from the house as I came into the relationship with all that attached to me. He gets quite miffed if then I head out to run for 10 miles during the only time we have to see one another. Don't blame the guy one bit, I am (after all) terrifically entertaining to have around not to mention blindingly attractive and smelling of flowers.

My hope- which might be a wild fantasy- is to figure out how to incorporate a few days of running into the schedule. (weather permitting.) Balance is important.